Turkish Prosecution Seeks Life Sentences for Two Former Kurdish Members of Parliament


The Diyarbakir Prosecutor’s office filed indictments this Thursday against Ahmet Turk and Aysel Tugluk, former members of the recently disbanded DTP party.

The two Kurdish former lawmakers were accused of incitement and spreading propaganda for the PKK. The indictments demand a sentence of 45 year for the 67-year-old Turk, and a 70 year sentence for the 44-year old Tugluk. In the December 2009 decision by Turkey’s Constitutional Court the two, along with 35 other Kurdish politicians, were stripped of their parliamentary immunity and banned from politics for five years.

According to Nuri Yaman, chairman of the BDP (which replaced the DTP after it was banned), during 2009 over 800 Kurdish politicians were arrested in Turkey. The arrests were carried out as part of an operation against the KCK, an umbrella body of Kurdish organizations. Tens were arrested following the ban of the DTP in December; the arrests continued during 2010 as well.